AUTHORITIES of the University of Benin yesterday described as “untrue and misleading” newspaper reports (not The Guardian) that recruitment and promotion of members of staff in the university has assumed an ethnic dimension with the management allegedly tilting them in favour of people of Bini ethnic extraction.
However, parts of the report in the document made available to The Guardian at the weekend faulted the finances of the school as handled by the bursary department.
Specifically, it cited the “inability of the bursar to comply with the financial provisions or live up to the responsibilities of the post. Visitor, therefore, directs management to ensure compliance and Council to re-assess the position of the bursar in the event of continued lapses”.
Contrary to media reports that the Federal Government Visitation Panel Report of 2004 to 2011 indicted the university’s authorities led by the Vice Chancellor (VC), Prof. Osayuki Oshodin, for alleged lopsided recruitment and promotion of workers, the school’s spokesman, Harry Osareren, said the Federal Government commended Oshodin for the progress at UNIBEN so far even as the school was advised to correct the imbalance in recruitment and promotion of employees.
On the sum of N267.712 million quoted in the report, which was alleged to be an overshoot of budgetary provision by the university management between 2004 and 2010, Osareren said: “That was under the tenure of the previous administrations and not that of Prof. Oshodin”.
On the directive by the Visitation Panel to the management of the school to ensure the recruitment of people from the host community into the university system, having failed to comply with this for nearly 40 years the school has been established, Osareren said: “This administration commenced the execution of that directive because host communities are supposed to form between 20 and 30 per cent of the junior workers. And this imbalance was what the vice chancellor tried to correct. And if you look at the list of people that were recruited recently, many of them are from other ethnic groups and not Binis as being alleged”. .
But the report commended the management of the university for restoring peace on campus and for giving the workers a new lease of life as their salaries were now being paid regularly.